Tag Archive | Video

Video Clip of The Week: Flights Over Phoenix, “Middle Of The World”


Hey what’s up. I hope that you are enjoying your weekend. Now that we have done some cursory bonding, I would like to say that with today’s Video Clip of The Week, which is for the awesome song “Middle Of The World” from LA-based trio Flights Over Phoenix, it is my hope that I am exposing you to a potential ear-worm that is powerfully addictive enough to supplant Ed Sheeran’s quasi-pervy, aural seduction device, “Shape of You” — which, I am sure we will all agree, simply cannot be resisted. You’re welcome.

Filmed on location at Soggy Dry Lake, in the California desert, and visually styled in the manner of, say, a John Varvatos photo shoot, “Middle Of The World” features the band performing on an arid plane punctuated only by inflated black balloons tethered to the dry earth like bobbing, mutant cacti. And speaking of cacti, the protagonist of our story is an anthropomorphic cactus who finds a picture postcard of California and decides to take a cross-country journey to the beach  — trading one sandy environment for another, but with a few essential differences that change his world completely. In this way, “Middle of The World” serves as a powerful metaphor for breaking free from your restrictive comfort zone to find what you need in order to attain a state of true happiness, or something like that. Heavy.

Aurally, “Middle Of The World” is guilt-free ear candy. The lyrics convey a universal message of self-empowerment and lead singer Keith Longo has a voice like butter.  The band explains that, “‘Middle Of The World’ is a song that explores the feelings of isolation through imagery that one might experience in a dream of that nature. In writing the song, we wanted it to feel like a journey, and so we wanted the music to be up-tempo and have a lot of movement.” Mission accomplished.

“Middle Of The World” can be found on the band’s newly-released EP, Where I Comedown. Like them on the FaceBook at This Link! Enjoy!

Flights Over Phoenix Band
Flights Over Phoenix are Chris Santillo, Jordan Nuanez and Keith Longo.

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Video Clip of The Week: RadioBlack, “Thread (I Am)”


It happens way too often that I am pitched a song which, by description alone, promises to Bring The Rock. Then, what happens next is I play the clip and find that it is either hopelessly whiny emo masquerading as pseudo-rock, or it features the genre of eardrum excoriating vocals (i.e. makes Jonathan Davis sound like Freddie Mercury) that pass for “aggressive” these day.  Barf. Please stop trying to fool me with your deceptive pitches. I have ears.

And then there are songs like “Thread (I Am)” from powerhouse trio RadioBlack, a band that has earned the right to call itself Rock by knowing how to mix melodicism with a full-on aural attack. Kudos: you get to be in this week’s column. “Thread” starts out with a tease of the grunge classic  “Today” by Smashing Pumpkins before it immediately finds its own groove, becoming wildly anthemic and angsty without falling victim to fatal emo trappings or being so angry that it forgets to “do the song.” I also love that front man/guitartist TJ Courtney looks like a pirate version of party-rock icon, Andrew WK. Did you ever think that could be a thing? It is, and Courtney completely owns it.

Visually, this a live performance piece (shot in an empty industrial loft) with the look of being captured on scratchy 16mm, and some lyrics thrown in for the kids who like that sort of thing. TJ explains, “We shot the ‘Thread’ video in just a couple of hours. We wanted to find a way to capture the energy that drives our live show and we thought this video was a good opportunity to do that. Sometimes in a video shoot setting you can lose that energy and intensity, so when we started the shoot we decided to just lay it all out there the way we do live. I think that came across.” I think so, too. These guys deserve to be stars.

Courtney’s band mates in RadioBlack are drummer Derek Gledhill (founding member of Smile Empty Soul, who is fucking flawless behind the kit) and bassist Hayato Takano, a seasoned touring player. “Thread (I Am)” comes from the band’s eponymous debut album, which was released on May 12th, 2017. Like them on the FaceBook at This Link. Enjoy!

RadioBlack Band
RadioBlack is Hayato Takano, TJ Courtney and Derek Gledhill

Video Clip of The Week: Amy O, “History Walking”


Happy 4th of July Weekend, Bitches! Today we have a real ‘Fire Cracker’ of a video clip for you: singer-songwriter Amy O’s high energy tune, “History Walking,” visualized by our favorite thing, an animated video! Yay! Amy offers that “History Walking” is about getting stuck in ruts with the people you love and have known for years, the comfort and frustration of long term relationships, getting lost in the banality of life and not always being able to access gratitude. It’s also about getting confused in your own timeline by letting the past affect your present and the present cloud your perception of the future. Basically, my personal understanding of the theory of relativity as explained by a pop song. Excellent!

Backed by an excellent power-pop band,  Amy O’s wildly contagious sound has been described as tightly coiled indie-pop music indebted to Sleater-Kinney and The Roches, Helium and Laura Nyro, defined by unruly guitars, excitable vocals, rambunctious performances, and supremely hyperactive hooks.

Visually, the vibrant abstract animation, courtesy of BrainTwins, is a splash of pop-psychedelia at its finest!

“History Walking” is the third single from Amy’s forthcoming LP, Elastic – out on Winspear on August 4th, 2017. Enjoy!

Amy O Elastic Album Art

Video Clip of The Week: Celebration, “Rolling On”

What I love most about the visual aspect of this week’s clip, “Rolling On” from progressive-pop (a genre description that I just coined right this minute) trio, Celebration, is that it feels like you’re watching the video catalog of an extremely cool art installation. And I see a ton of art, as you may know, so I think that’s a valid assessment. And if this video were just here to serve as an introduction to an art exhibit that was coming soon to a gallery near me, you can bet I would be there in a heartbeat. Also, the song, which was described in a press release as “a flurry of soulful vocals, bass swagger and organ-driven sassiness” is exceptionally cool.  Win Win!

As a video created in the cut-out animation style, “Rolling On”  hangs together with a series of  cohesive and compelling imagery,  conveying a message of enlightenment, transformation and rebirth (pay attention to the cocoon) that pays off big time. Celebration vocalist Katrina Ford (who directed the video) offers that the wheel was a theme that “represents never ending change, rolling with the punches until a favorable wind, ever morphing, life.” Ford’s bandmates in Celebration are her husband (multi-instrumentalist and organist) Sean Antanaitis and drummer David Bergander. “Rolling On” can be found on Celebration’s latest album Wounded Healer, which is out now via through Bella Union. Enjoy!

Celebration Band

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Video Clip of The Week: “Someday” By Halfnoise


Hey, do you remember pop crooner Duncan Sheik? He was pretty hot stuff back in the late ’90s with his swoon-worthy, soft rock hits like “Barely Breathing” and, uh, other songs. I was a big, big fan! These days I believe he is scoring award-winning Broadway musicals and growing impressive facial hair. Duncan Sheik! If you’ve ever wondered how awesome it might have sounded if Duncan Sheik had recorded songs infused with a bossa nova beat and built around a strident piano arrangement, then have I got a song for you! This week’s featured clip is “Someday,” from Nashville-based sensation, Halfnoise (aka Zac Farro, drummer for the rock band Paramore), and it is all that I claimed in the sentences above, and a bag of the chips of your choice.

The effect-heavy video for “Someday” was shot entirely on a vintage camcorder, with all analog effects being provided by Zac’s friend and video collaborator Mike Kluge. It’s fun and groovy and perfectly in sync with the song’s aural groove and laid back lyrics about letting a relationship take its natural course or whatever. No doubt this song would get the bodies moving at any party as well, so there’s that. “Someday” can be found on Zac’s latest Halfnoise recording, the Velvet Face EP, which is out now (via Congrats Records) on vinyl, which they tell me is making a come back! From what I’ve heard, the EP outstanding. Enjoy!

Half Noise Press Photo

Video Clip of The Week: Garren Sean, “Lift Off”


On this fine Sunday morning in June, when we are just on the cusp of summer, The Worley Gig brings you the chill funk of Bay Area artist Garren Sean’s “Lift Off” and its accompanying animated video! Best described (if only by me) as Steely Dan meets Sly Stone, “Lift Off” is characteristically warm and upbeat, the perfect introduction to Garren’s guitar-driven sound. Raised on soul and R&B, Garren then discovered Classic Rock and 80s Funk, and went to mix the two influences, creating a refreshingly unique style. In a word: Sublime.

I also love how the artist distracts us momentarily from the song’s obvious sexual metaphor by sampling audio from the July 16, 1969 liftoff coverage of the legendary Apollo Eleven moon mission, manned by Astronauts Neil Armstrong, Edwin “Buzz” Aldrin, and Michael Collins! “Lift Off” can be found on Garren Sean’s eponymous debut album Garren, which promises a “sense of exploration, and is set for release this summer. Enjoy!

Garren Sean Photo
Garren Sean by James McCloud

Anish Kapoor’s Decension in Brooklyn Bridge Park

Whirlpool Detail
All Photos By Gail

Brooklyn Bridge Park is fun place to hang out on a sunny weekend day. Into early September, there’s another reason to make a destination of this small oasis that rests in the shadow on one of the city’s major landmarks: that being Anish Kapoor’s Descension whirlpool installation!

Decension Signage and Entrance

For more than 35 years, Anish Kapoor — an Indian artist who now lives in London — has been among the most creative artists of his generation. He has created compelling and poetic bodies of work using a range of materials that include raw pigment, stone, stainless steel, synthetic polymer, resin, and wax. He also has a longstanding interest in the sculptural potential of water.

Descension From a Distance

Descension Approach

Descension

Descension With Bridge

Decension, presented for the first time in the United States, represents a breakthrough with this inherently challenging, slippery substance. I visited the site on the (unfortunately overcast) Sunday of Memorial Day weekend, where I took a short video as I became hypnotized by the deep whooshing sound of the endless swirling water. Enjoy!


Like all of Kapoor’s works, Decension is the result of intensive research into material and process, exploring the potential of water to behave in surprising ways. The continuous swirling motion of this 26-foot-diameter liquid mass converges in a central vortex, as if rushing water is being sucked into the earth’s depths. We thus experience Kapoor’s abstract form on multiple levels. Its powerful physicality has a visceral and mesmerizing impact. Yet Descension also stimulates the imagination and suggests a social, cultural and even mythic dimension.

Decension

Descension is on view at Pier 1’s Bridge View Lawn until September 10th, 2017. Viewing times are 9:00 am-9:00 pm daily except during inclement weather.

Descension Close Up